In the wake of the USMNT’s utterly pathetic defeat to Trinidad and Tobago and subsequent bouncing from the World Cup, perhaps no man on the planet has greater license to say “I told you so” than former head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. That’s not to say that Klinsmann shouldn’t have been fired or that he would’ve steered the U.S. to the World Cup, it’s just to say that he’s ultimately been vindicated in his criticisms of Major League Soccer and American player mentality.
For the first time since the 1998-99 season, no manager in Serie A has been fired after seven matches. All twenty teams have decided to stick with their coach, even the terrible ones. It’s a quirk of fate, remarkable only because of the trigger-happy tendencies of Serie A owners past. But there’s one Italian manager who should almost definitely be fired. Unfortunately, he’s the coach of the national team.
We here at The18 have never really given much thought to Francesco Guidolin. The former Swansea City, Monaco and Palermo manager just never crossed our minds in a way that was interesting. Until now. It has been reported that in 2006, when Guidolin was managing at Palermo, he used a very, um, explosive prop in a team talk.
Close your eyes for a minute and picture legendary Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson being hit in the face by a pizza. Keep picturing this until you start giggling uncontrollably, then open your eyes, and rejoice, because this is a thing that actually happened.
Who, you might ask, had the gall, the temerity, the AUDACITY to throw a pizza at Sir Alex Ferguson and HIT HIM IN THE FACE WITH IT?
Cesc Fabregas, then with Arsenal and now with our complete admiration and respect.
How much of Hatem Ben Arfa’s enfant terrible reputation is deserved? It’s impossible to say, because we don’t know the man. However, with only one-year remaining on his Paris Saint-Germain contract, it’s become clear that Ben Arfa’s exit from the French capital is going to look a lot like his exits from Lyon, Marseille, Newcastle United and Hull City.
FC Dallas has been in a free fall in recent months. The club has won just once since a 2-1 win over Montreal on July 22 saw FC Dallas briefly move to the top of the Western Conference, a span of 12 matches that included more than bad losses. It could get even worse after an apparent illegal substitution late in Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Orlando City.
After a scrappy, convincing win over Brighton & Hove Albion Sunday, we've been forced to confront a troubling idea. Arsenal have been acting awfully strange lately, grinding out wins against lesser teams instead of comically imploding. This is not what we signed up for.
We signed up for an Arsenal that's liable to do anything at any time for any reason, or no reason. And for the first few weeks of the season, that's what we got. Since the first international break, though, Arsenal have been acting sort of normal.